Father tells of fatal gang-rape victim’s courage, determination to be a doctor

Published: January 2, 2013

RAHUL BEDI AND ROB CRILLY 
THE DAILY TELEGRAPH

Indian women offer prayers for the victim of a vicious gang rape Dec. 16 at Mahatma Gandhi memorial in New Delhi, India, Jan. 2, 2013. Dar Yasin/AP

The father of the Delhi gang-rape victim has described his “brave” daughter’s dream of becoming a doctor in an emotional first interview.

Speaking in the family’s ancestral village, he remembered a kind, compassionate young woman dedicated to her studies. The 23-year-old woman, who has not been named, died on Saturday after suffering horrific injuries during an hour-long assault by a gang on board a bus on Dec. 16.

The story shocked India, revealing a sordid side to the country where women face constant harassment and sexual assaults are frequently ignored by police. A day after he helped to scatter his daughter’s ashes on the Ganges, the father spoke alongside one of his sons. “She was brave, had no fear, and was full of life,” he told the BBC’s Hindi service. “She studied day and night. We would not even know when she slept and woke up.”

A stubborn streak helped to propel his daughter from the ranks of the lower middle class into higher education.

“My daughter was very adamant on whatever she wanted. When she used to go to school in class four [ages nine and 10] there was a sweetshop on the way and if she made up her mind to have a sweet even the shopkeeper had to relent,” he said, breaking down with emotion at times.

“The same happened in her higher education and she was doing what she wanted. I remember asking her once, ‘Who are your friends?’ She replied, ‘Dad, it’s only my books I am friends with’. She always wanted to be a doctor and was sure about it. That’s why we moved from this rural place to Delhi – to give our children a better future.”

The family even sold some of its land to fund her education when the girl refused to compromise on her dream.

“I told her repeatedly that I could not fund her education, but she did not budge,” said her father.

One of the victim’s two younger brothers described the night they received the telephone call telling them his sister had been in an “accident”.

“She was not scared of anyone,” he said. “We could never imagine that such a fate would befall her.”

Fresh details of the attack emerged yesterday as police prepared to submit a 1,000-page report to a district court.

It describes how the gang tried to run over the woman after dumping her from the bus, according to accounts published in Indian newspapers. Her boyfriend managed to pull her to safety just in time. However, her family disputed reports that they were due to marry.

Such is the anger over the case that lawyers say they will not defend the six suspects charged with rape and murder.

Britain yesterday warned tourists to stay out of Delhi’s city centre, where protests are being held almost every day. The Foreign Office said: “You should avoid the city centre until the situation becomes clearer and be careful to avoid any demonstrations, which could turn violent.”

The warning provoked an angry reaction from Indian politicians, who said the city was safe and accused Britain of meddling in its affairs.


Tags: , , , , , ,





Featured

crime-British Columbia

Three arrested after Surrey RCMP-involved shooting in Newton

AMY REID SURREY NOW NEWTON — Three people are in custody following a police-involved shooting in Newton Friday afternoon. Shortly after noon, plainclothes officers attempted to…
Continue Reading »

Immigrant-language test

Woman loses Canadian citizenship for failing language, knowledge tests after it was granted in error

ADRIAN HUMPHREYS POSTMEDIA NEWS A would-be Canadian who received a grade of zero out of six on her citizenship language test and four out of…
Continue Reading »

India-Kashmir-Obama

Pakistani PM Sharif asks Obama to play role for resolution of Kashmir issue

MUNIR AHMED THE ASSOCIATED PRESS ISLAMABAD — Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday asked the U.S. President Barack Obama to play a role in…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

crime-British Columbia

Three arrested after Surrey RCMP-involved shooting in Newton

AMY REID SURREY NOW NEWTON — Three people are in custody following a police-involved shooting in Newton Friday afternoon. Shortly after noon, plainclothes officers attempted to…
Continue Reading »

Whitecaps2

Spice Sports: Whitecaps announce new USL PRO team!

GOPI AND THE GORA FOR VANCOUVER DESI An exciting announcement was made this morning at UBC’s Gerald McGavin Rugby Centre. Soccer fans in Vancouver will…
Continue Reading »

Immigrant-language test

Woman loses Canadian citizenship for failing language, knowledge tests after it was granted in error

ADRIAN HUMPHREYS POSTMEDIA NEWS A would-be Canadian who received a grade of zero out of six on her citizenship language test and four out of…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

desi bride loaded in gold

Indian bride draws flak for wearing $700,000 jewellery at her wedding

CEN AGENCY An Indian sweet maker made sure his daughter was the golden girl at her upcoming wedding by covering her in gold jewellery worth…
Continue Reading »

India

Video: Bear mauls Indian farmer to death, injures second man (Warning: Graphic Content)

VANCOUVER DESI An Indian farmer was mauled to death and another left seriously injured after a terrifying and unusual bear attack in Karnataka on Monday,…
Continue Reading »

Spiderman

Video: India’s real-life Spiderman scales buildings with bare hands

VANCOUVER DESI A 27-year-old man in India who is nicknamed the “real-life Spiderman” has become one of Karnataka’s leading tourist attractions for his ability to effortlessly…
Continue Reading »

desi victim

Victim of ski accident to open spinal-cord recovery centre in Richmond (w/video)

NICK EAGLAND VANCOUVER DESI Dhruv Kapoor realized he was in deep trouble as he barrelled down a ski run in Russell, Man., on an icy…
Continue Reading »

op-ed

Aziza Sindhu: How do you grieve for a tyrant father?

AZIZA SINDHU CALGARY HERALD My father, Salim M. Sindhu, passed away on Nov. 10. As a child, I wished he smiled at me, as a…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Bollywood

Aamir Khan and Deepika Padukone the next hit Bollywood couple?

HINDUSTAN TIMES Bollywood actors Aamir Khan and Deepika Padukone are known to deliver hits on their shoulders alone. Now, audiences may be in for a…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood sex video

I can’t take nonsense: Sonakshi Sinha on why she lashed out at KRK on Twitter (w/gallery)

HINDUSTAN TIMES Some Bollywood stars tend to be diplomatic about controversies, and choose not to react. Sonakshi Sinha isn’t one of them. Last month, she…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood wedding reception

Photos: Khan-tastic wedding reception for Salman’s sister Arpita

VANCOUVER DESI While celebrities have reached the wedding reception for Salman Khans sister Arpita and businessman Aayush Sharma to wish them their best, photos have…
Continue Reading »